Media personality and vegan entrepreneur, Heather Mills, has announced that she purchased the former Walkers crisps factory in Peterlee, England. According to the Sunderland Echo, the former model appeared on ITV’s “This Morning,” where she spoke about her plans to use the new space to expand her VBites vegan food range and bring jobs back to the area.
Around 355 production jobs were lost last year when the crisps factory was shut down by US-based Pepsi Co last year. The Washington native said that she had planned to buy a factory in Austria, but after learning that a friend had lost their job, she decided to revitalize the local economy by buying the Walkers crisp factory.
The vegan female entrepreneur also had a message for retailers about supporting British-owned businesses: “I am pleading with the supermarkets to buy British. We have Brexit on the way, we are in this situation love it or hate it. The manufacturers are leaving for Germany left, right and center.”
Heather Mills also recently appeared on the news to talk about her personal experience with going vegan. The former model had her leg amputated following a collision with a police motorbike in 1993. Mills said that she noticed immediate improvements in her overall health within two weeks of adopting a plant-based lifestyle and largely credits her recovery to her diet.
The soon to be revived factory will play a role in VBites’ expansion, which was announced last year. Founded in 1993, Heather Mills’vegan meat brand currently exports to over 18 European countries and makes over 100 plant-based products that are sold in UK supermarkets. The company prides itself on its wide range of products and the use of only natural, plant-based ingredients with no artificial colors, GMOs, hydrogenated fats, and cholesterol.
Heather Mills’ VBites has been recognized as the UK’s most ethical food supplier 10 times and holds a number of other awards. Recent accolades include “Best Vegan Meat” at Vegan Festival UK 2017 and becoming a four-time winner of The Great Moshimo Vegan Challenge. Earlier this month, the brand announced that it would offer vegan fish steaks at over 140 Flaming Grill pub locations across the UK.
Image Credit: VBites / Heather Mills